Both Houses of Parliament prorogued today (Thursday 25 April), and will meet again for the State Opening of Parliament on Wednesday 8 May.
Marking the formal end to the parliamentary session, prorogation is the period between the end of one session of Parliament and State Opening which begins the next session.
Prorogation is signalled by an announcement, read in the House of Lords, on behalf of the Queen. The announcement sets out the major bills passed during the 2012-13 session and also describes other significant measures taken by the government.
The announcement is made to both Houses and the Speaker of the House of Commons and MPs attend the Lords chamber to listen. The same announcement is then read out by Mr Speaker in the House of Commons.
Bills receiving royal assent
The following bills became Acts of Parliament:
- Justice and Security Act 2013
- Groceries Code Adjudicator Act 2013
- Succession to the Crown Act 2013
- Partnerships (Prosecution) (Scotland) Act 2013
- Crime and Courts Act 2013
- Defamation Act 2013
- Marine Navigation Act 2013
- Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013
- Public Service Pensions Act 2013
- Growth and Infrastructure Act 2013
- Bills before Parliament
What is State Opening of Parliament?
State Opening of Parliament marks the start of the parliamentary year and is the main ceremonial event of the parliamentary calendar. The ceremony takes place on the first day of a new parliamentary session or shortly after a general election. It sets out the government's agenda for the coming session.
The State Opening ceremony takes place in the House of Lords chamber, but is not classed as a formal sitting of the Lords.
Image: House of Lords 2013 / Roger Harris